Should we risk going on our scheduled tour of Tunisia at the end of March? Agency says it will cancel if there is imminent danger...
The tour was set up through a travel agency in conjunction with a major American university. We are supposed to fly to Tunis from Frankfort.
If you think it is safe, what advice do you have?
Cinzia, a couple of issues to address here: safety and what happens if the tour is cancelled.
Cancellation first - if you don't already have travel insurance (or a policy that covers cancellation) it's probably too late to get it. You could try, but make sure you ask the insurers exactly what will and will not be covered in the event of this so-called "imminent danger".
If you already have travel insurance, and you bought it a while ago (before Libya went pear-shaped at least) AND its a policy that offers cancellation cover, you might be able to make a claim if your tour provider cancels. You might be able to make a claim if something happens to you (you are injured or your belongings are destroyed) if there are renewed violent protests.
My advice is for you to speak to your tour provider about exactly what their cancellation and refund policy is. How will they determine "imminent danger", and if/when they do, will they be offering a full refund or some other arrangement - make sure you're very clear about this. They might be able to refund all except some deposit amounts for flights, accommodation and tours (which may still lleave you considerably out of pocket)
If you have cancellation coverage in a policy you purchased before North Africa erupted in flames, you might be able to get reimbursed for those lost deposit monies. Again it depends on your policy, level of cover and when you took it out. You SO need to call your insurance company about this.
OK, now the hard question; is it safe to go to Tunisia?
I'll need some more space for this, so look for the next answer. almost 9 years ago
Cinzia, is it "safe" to go to Tunisia? They've just had (are having) a revolution, but it is relatively calm at the moment.
The whole North Africa democracy movement started in Tunisia late last year. After deadly, violent protests the president fled to Saudi Arabia, and an interim government promising reform is in place.
According to your state department, public order has been generally restored, especially in the coastal tourist zone from Tunis to Sousse (including Djerba), but it remains unwise to travel to the central, southern and western regions.
Adding to the uncertainty, as of today there are 40,000+ Libyans on the Tunisian border trying to get away from the bloodshed of the revolution there.
if it stays as it is at the moment you should be okay if you take some precautions.... stay right away from demonstrations - they have a habit of turning ugly. And stay in the northern tourist zone.
You'll most likely have a great time, and come away without a scratch and wondering why you were so worried. Is it "dangerous", no. But neither is it guaranteed "safe".
If you go you'll need to have your wits about you, ask lots of questions of guides and locals about your safety, keep across latest developments (I mean daily!) and be prepared for the unexpected. It's good to be nervous about it, it means you'll be cautious. Also, register your travel with the US State Department - it'll help them find you if it does take a turn for the worse.
almost 9 years ago